Tuesday, February 11, 2014

Flying the Flag

A few days ago, good mate Roly, invited us round to his place for an afternoon dinner party, and the kids could enjoy his pool while the adults sipped 'sociable sherbets' and chatted the sunny afternoon away.

I mentioned in a earlier post about the wonderful model cheery blossom trees he gave me then...

While there we also got to see the flag pole he received as a Christmas present from his kids. Roly has long had a fascination with flags, especially those with historic military significance, and has collected a number over the years, including some wonderful Napoleonic banners.

Indeed, I think all war-gamers enjoy the pageantry of the flags and banners of their troops as they march across the table...

Whilst I admired the flag flying in the breeze, Roly mentioned I should get one for my property...

He gave me the weblink of the company that supplies them, and a very reasonable deal it was too, complete with two flags.

It didn't take me long to place an order, and dispatch was very prompt. I thought I might get it sorted and erected in time for our National Day here; Waitangi Day, but I didn't quite have the concrete poured and set in time...

...but it was ready to go a couple of days later...

My father-in-law and I start assembling the poles as my father, visiting from the UK, readies to video the event...

Up the pole goes, into the concrete base, now hidden by a soil layer with grass seed sown...

And of course some still shots with pole in place ready to fly the flag...

I was supplied with the New Zealand national flag, featuring the Union Jack and the Southern Cross of 4 red stars upon a blue field, of my adopted country, as well as the Silver Fern flag, much used by New Zealand sporting teams.

We chose to fly the National flag, this close to Waitangi day... up she goes...

... and catches the strong breeze on the somewhat overcast day...

Flying straight and true...

As the flag was raised our kids sang the New Zealand national anthem, which I must confess I don't know the words to as yet... This emotional moment bringing a tear to my fathers eye... aw, bless!

More information about the Flags of New Zealand can be found here.

Interestingly there is another recent push for a change of the National flag here. As ties to Crown and Commonwealth diminish with time, the desire to have the Union Jack featured as part of the flag is dropping. There are also concerns the flag is too similar to the Australian flag, with which it is often confused. This is countered of course, by the fact than many servicemen have given their lives serving under this flag, and to have it changed would be disrespectful to their memory and sacrifice...

Waitangi day itself also brings to the fore, pent up emotions within our multicultural society, which is a real shame as I feel we should simply be one people - New Zealanders or 'Kiwis', united and treated equally and fairly, under one National flag and identity.

Sadly, the signing of the Treaty of Waitangi, seems to have left this country with a problematic legacy, open to varying interpretations ...

The flag is just visible towards the rear of our property as you come down the driveway...

Before erecting the pole I did a double check with local council in case there were any restrictions in place about putting up flag poles. There were a couple of regulations - the pole had to 10m away from my boundary with the road, and 5m from the boundaries with my neighbors. So our chosen location was fine. If I had wanted to put it nearer these boundaries I would have to apply for, and presumably pay for, Resource Consent...

I don't think it will be up 24/7 but we'll certainly fly it at weekends when we are at home enjoying a sunny day in the garden.

I also hope to collect more flags to fly on special occasions, as well as some characterful ones... I'll certainly be getting some of the Lord of the Rings themed flags available online and most likely a Jolly Roger!

Flying the appropriate flag for whatever game is being played certainly seems a requirement to me!

Goodness knows what the neighbors will think! ;-)


  1. That is ace you have a new addiction!

  2. An excellent post Scott, everyone should be proud to fly their countries flag!!!

    1. As a Brit, I think there has always been a certain reserve in ostentatious displays, and flag waving only really occurring at particular events, unlike say, the Americans, who seem to wave their flag at any opportunity, which is a good sign of national pride.
      So I found it rather fun to feel proud to fly a flag openly... I think the Brits only in recent years seem to be developing an overt groundswell of national pride, particularly after recent events like the horrific murder of Lee Rigby (RIP Soldier)... which is good to see.

  3. Given it was a Christmas presso from the kids I fully expected to see a pair of socks snapping in the breeze!

    1. LOL ! Good point on the Santa connection, I may have to alert North Pole about the proximity of flag pole to 'chimney' - don't want to get up on Christmas morning to find a sleigh and reindeer crash-landed on the lawn... ;-)

  4. I have enjoyed catching up with your blog. The Hobbiton pictures were especially nice. The flag looks nice and flying themed flags sounds like fun. Hopefully some more games with your pirate ship are in the near future.

    1. Thanks Sean, glad you have enjoyed the pictures :-) Ah har Jim Lad, most certainly! ;-)

  5. "...and most likely a Jolly Roger!" Let it be the Jolly Roger with the crossed swords! Hoist the Colors!

    1. Exactly what I was thinking, I just have to source one now!
      'Hoist the colours' indeed!

  6. I'm all for flying the Jolly Roger when the occasion warrants. :)

    Oh, and don't worry about not knowing the words to our national anthem, I was born here and I don't know them. It never comes up. :D

    1. Yes indeed, I have found a couple of good examples :-)

      Good to hear - I was rather concerned at trying to memorize them - its not like I went to school here with them ringing in my ears forever more!


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